After doing some tests at home this week, I think Feed the Beast
(probably using the Direwolf20 mod pack) is the way for us to go now. It has most of the stuff from Tekkit, adds even more stuff (some of it quite useless and just "for looks" for now, though), and should in theory perform better on the client-side since it is based on a newer version of Minecraft. I tried the nether recently, and it doesn't bog down at all like it does/did with tekkit. I'll start working on setting up the server tonight and documenting the client setup process for you guys.
As for the community topic, gerlocian and I have been talking offline again about what we could do about the new world. I think the idea for Technopolis was a good premise, but it was flawed from the start because the town structure greatly limits the amount of mining, exploration, and creation that any individual can do in the area. That kills a lot of the fun in the game. What we need is breathing room for everyone to stretch out yet still find something to help weave a cohesive community.
So, here are my thoughts for the next world to come. Think back to the Bridgeport glory days. I think that part of what made BP successful wasn't necessarily that we had a central town, which we've since tried and failed to get working well in the last few worlds, but that we mostly all sprawled out to explore on our own and then connected back to each other
using the skyway network. I would like to recreate that kind of environment, but we should add a few rules to foster community projects.
First, I would suggest we immediately split up and fan out across the new world
after creating a simple "safe house" at spawn. Pick a direction, and go! Once you find a place where you'd like to settle down, clear some trees and land, build your first home, and get to work on the essentials. After establishing yourself, if you decide that the area works for you, build your section of skyway back to spawn!
This way, spawn becomes a central hub to connect us all, but no one individual is responsible for designing and building the connections between us. For the skyway, we'd need to agree on a width and height, but the rest is up to you (construction materials, onramp stairs vs ladders vs teleporters, etc). Eventually, spawn would grow to have more buildings than just the safe house, and the skyway network would connect us back to them, but now I'm getting ahead of myself.
Second, I'm glad that 709 pointed out how everybody has had little farms in their basements. I agree that those are partly to blame for other community projects never taking off. If you don't have to return to the surface to get food or fuel or other renewable resources, why would you bother trekking far away from your house for them? So, we should institute a ban on personal farms.
No animal farms, no tree farms, and no crop farms! Instead, all farms have to be community-driven from the central spawn area. You take some, and you replant and breed to replace what you took. To get everyone started so you don't starve
before the farms appear, I'll magic in and divvy up a starter supply of melons for everyone to have. You're allowed a small subsistence farm of 8 melons at your home, but please no more! The community farming will only work if we all participate.
Third, as we set up the structures around the spawn hub, we should set up trading posts or stores in the hub town
. I don't think we need to set up official structures early on, nor do I think we should all be forced into sharing a single community exchange building. With the newer mod packs, resources like diamonds will become precious again now that we won't have alchemical magic to create resources out of nothing. An interesting machine block that we haven't really used yet is the Trade-O-Mat
. If you have something to sell, hook it up to a Trade-O-Mat and name your price. It works without any supervision as long as there are resources to sell from the adjacent chest! If the Trade-O-Mat isn't your thing, you could do old-fashioned trades or just donate resources to a common pool. Maybe this would finally get a community economy going?
What are your thoughts on these proposals? Do you like them? Do you think they would work? Would you be willing to try them for a while?